Customer Acquisition or Customer Bribery?

DraftKings is the poster child of online gaming for overspending on customer acquisition. And the company paid the price in its fourth-quarter results. But how should you acquire players in a cost-effective manner? Bruce Merati has some suggestions.

A Note to Jason Robins

Last week’s disastrous quarterly report where DraftKings CEO Jason Robins (l.) upped the estimated loss for the company to almost a billion dollars caused the company’s share price to plunge by more than a quarter. Gaming observer Richard Schuetz says keep your eye on the ball, not on the stock price.

Survey Shows Kentuckians Want Sports Betting

Nearly two-thirds of Kentucky voters support sports betting, according to a recent poll, the same percentages as 2020. State Rep. Adam Koenig (l.), sponsor of several previous sports betting bills, says the poll demonstrates that his constituents want to bet.

Blackstone to Buy Crown Resorts; Packer in for Big Payday

The rich get richer, and James Packer (l.) is proof. The billionaire casino magnate will collect $3.26 billion from the proposed sale of Crown Resorts to U.S.-based equity firm Blackstone. Packer reportedly is glad to shed the Aussie casino giant, which has faced nonstop fire from media and regulators for money laundering, tax evasion and other offenses.

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Sportsbooks Cleaned Up on Super Bowl Sunday

A Super Bowl win by the Los Angeles Rams warmed the hearts of sports books. Nevada set a sports betting record for Super Bowl wagering. New Jersey didn't do badly, either. It felt like old times, with fans flocking to retail sportsbooks and mask mandates relaxed.

Apollo Sweeps Nevada Regulators in Sands Deal

Apollo Global Management last week received the approval of the Nevada Gaming Commission to take over management of the Venetian and Palazzo (l.) in a deal that saw Las Vegas Sands sell the real estate of the property to the REIT, VICI.

Chicago Casino Would Disrupt McCormick Place

Three of the five bids for a Chicago Casino would require utilizing areas of the massive McCormick Place convention center (l.). Chief Executive Officer Larita Clark said that would impact operations and lead to possible cancellations.

Singapore to Form New Gaming Regulator

Singapore will officially establish a new gambling regulator by the middle of this year. The Gambling Regulatory Authority would consolidate four regulatory bodies into a single agency to govern the region’s two casinos—Marina Bay Sands (l.) and Resorts World Sentosa.

Hard Rock Eyes Three Sites for NYC Casino

Hard Rock Chairman Jim Allen (l.) opined on the company’s interest in a New York City casino during a visit to Hard Rock Atlantic City to hand out over $10 million to employees of that property.

FANTINI’S FINANCE: Good News & Bad News

Heading into fourth-quarter earnings season, the U.S. casino industry is finding its feet, with the decline in Covid, the return of some business, and a continuing commitment to fiscal prudence. But…

ASIAN GAMING More

Shinjo City, Japan Interested in IR

A petition is circulating in Japan’s Shinjo City to assess local interest in an integrated resort with gaming. More than 1,000 people have signed the petition so far.

Will POGOs Return to Manila?

It's been almost two years since Philippine Offshore Gaming Operations, or POGOs, fled Manila in search of more business-friendly markets. Now there are indications the iGaming industry may be coming back.

Singapore Gets Tough on Underage Gambling, Proxies

Singapore's new Gambling Control Bill takes aim at adults who gamble with underage people or place proxy bets on their behalf. The crimes are punishable by up to six years in prison or fines up to US$223,000.

Macau Judge: AAEC Has Not Proven LVS Case

A Macau judge has ruled that Asian American Entertainment Corp. did not prove it had an official agreement to partner with the Las Vegas Sands Corp. on a Macau gaming concession.

Construction Delayed on Incheon Resort

Hong Kong-listed Guangzhou R&F Properties has asked the Korean government to extend the construction deadline of its Midan City Resort Complex development (l.) by two years, until March 2024.

EUROPEAN GAMING More

Flutter Takes Different Approach to Gambling Harm

Flutter Entertainment CEO Conor Grant (l.) says his company will switch its approach to dealing with gambling harm by trying to prevent problems before they happen. The five-step plan comes after months of work.

Italy to Introduce Gaming Market Safeguards

The Italian Ministry of Economy and Finance is spearheading a reorganization plan to reform the country’s gaming sector. It takes aim at betting shops, gaming machines, and online and brick-and-mortar casinos.

Hungary May End Online Gaming Monopoly

Hungary appears headed to ending the state monopoly on online sports betting. Under pressure from the European Union, the country’s parliament is poised to open the market to commercial operators.

GLOBAL GAMING More

Indian Court Strikes Down Skill-Based Gaming Ban

The Karnataka High Court (l.) has ruled that a law against online gambling that also banned skill-based online games was unconstitutional. India is one of the fastest growing i-gaming markets in the world.

Brazil Lawmakers Continue to Evaluate Gaming

The head of Brazil’s Chamber of Deputies said in a press conference that a bill legalizing all types of gaming will be on the agenda for the current session, and may be discussed this week.

ONLINE GAMING More

Dutch iGaming Ads Are Too Much, Say Experts

Online casinos in the new Dutch gaming market are spending millions on advertising. Experts in gambling addiction warn they are targeting a vulnerable population. Regulators are paying “special attention” to the offerings.

SPORTS BETTING More

New York and Jersey Sports Betting Going Strong

During its first five weeks, online sports betting has broken records in New York, though New Jersey has not fallen off as expected. We'll see if New York can keep at that level. Caesars is leading the way in New York.

Survey Shows Kentuckians Want Sports Betting

Nearly two-thirds of Kentucky voters support sports betting, according to a recent poll, the same percentages as 2020. State Rep. Adam Koenig (l.), sponsor of several previous sports betting bills, says the poll demonstrates that his constituents want to bet.

Resorts Digital Dumps Sports Betting

Resorts Digital Gaming has announced a pending agreement that will allow a global sports betting provider to operate under the RDG license in New Jersey. In the meantime, it won’t accept sports bets.

Paysafe Expands to Louisiana, Oregon

Paysafe is expanding its payment technology to the new mobile sports betting markets in Louisiana and Oregon, where it will power payment and affiliate programs for multiple mobile books.

Nova Scotia Launches Single-Game Sports Betting

Nova Scotia has launched single-game sports betting, the last of Canada’s Atlantic provinces to do so. Residents in the other Atlantic provinces have been able to make sports bets since August.

UNITED STATES GAMING More

Wynn Resorts to Sell Boston Real Estate

Wynn Resorts will sell the real estate of Encore Boston Harbor (l.) to Realty Income, a real estate investment trust, and continue to operate the casino while leasing the property. The sale could fund projects like a UAE integrated resort.

Virginia Senate Committee Rejects Petersburg Casino

To the dismay of Virginia state Senator Joe Morrissey (l.), the Senate Finance and Appropriations committee killed his proposal for a Petersburg casino referendum. Last year Richmond voters rejected a proposed casino.

Addabbo Turns Energy to Downstate NY Casino Licenses

Senator Joseph Addabbo (l.), basking in the success of New York mobile gaming, now is pushing to award three full casino licenses to properties in the New York City area. If he gets his way, one would go to Resort World in Queens.

TRIBAL GAMING More

Oregon Justice: HHR Machines At Track Would Be Illegal

The Oregon Department of Justice has ruled that the historical horse racing machines proposed for Grants Pass’ Flying Lark entertainment center are illegal. The state’s gaming tribes are pleased, but Grand’s Pass owner Travis Boersma (l.) disagrees.

Justice Department Appeals Florida Compact Ruling

The U.S. Department of Justice has appealed a district court ruling invalidating the gaming compact between Florida and the Seminole Tribe due to sports betting exclusivity. The DOJ asks if the judge’s “remedy” went too far.

Osage Casinos Present Missouri Casino Renderings

The Osage Nation awaits approval from the U.S. Department of the Interior to start construction on a proposed casino on ancestral lands at Lake of the Ozarks, Missouri, part of a $60 million entertainment complex.

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Culinary Union Leader Retires

Geoconda Argüello-Kline (l.), secretary-treasurer of Nevada’s powerful Culinary Workers Union, has retired after 32 years. She called her role as a Local 226 leader “an honor of my life.”

Yousfi Named Senior VP at Fontainebleau

The Fontainebleau Las Vegas, set to open at the end of 2023, has named hospitality executive Tony Yousfi as senior vice president of sales, catering and conference services.

Sean Evans Joins Eclipse as Senior VP of Sales

Eclipse Gaming, which provides casino games to tribal and commercial operators, has appointed Sean Evans (l.) as its new senior vice president of sales. Evans focus on partnerships with tribal gaming operators.

Abreu Joins OS Studios as Head of Broadcasting

OS Studios last week announced the promotion of Will Abreu (l.) to head of broadcasting. Abreu has 11 years of experience in the gaming and broadcasting industries and has produced more than 150 gaming events.

Vázquez Joins Win Systems as Mexico Sales Manager

Win Systems, provider of casino solutions for the global gaming industry, has appointed Jonnathan Vázquez (l.) as sales manager in Mexico. Vázquez has held high-level sales positions at in markets around the world.

GOODS & SERVICES More

GeWeTe Installs Cash Machines in Oddsline Shops

GeWeTe CEO Aristidis Tsikouras (l.) will install its best-selling Cash-Center Backloader cash handling machines at Oddsline betting shops in Germany and elsewhere in Europe. Oddsline owns brands such as Tipico, XTiP and TIPWIN.

Bet365 Debuts in Buenos Aires

The sports betting company, bet365, has launched its business in the greater Buenos Aires area. The app will feature sports and gambling. The South American nation joins 63 million customers around the world.

Czech-based Esports Provider Oddin Enters U.S. Market

Oddin, a Czech-based esports provider, has entered the U.S. market, with New Jersey the first jurisdiction to license it. According to founder Marek Suchar (l.), esports aren’t just for kids. Adults love them too.

TRADE SHOWS & CONFERENCES More

Cammegh Commits to ICE London

Cammegh has confirmed that it will display its table game equipment at ICE London, slated for April 11-14 at London’s ExCeL Centre, bucking the trend of exhibitors exiting the show.

Carcamo Offers Marketing Mini-Boot Camps

The success of the annual Casino Marketing Boot Camp has led founder Julia Carcamo, president of J Carcamo & Associates, to launch regionally-located one-day mini-events for marketing personnel.

ASEAN Gaming Summit Set for July in Manila

The ASEAN Gaming Summit, originally scheduled for March 21-23, will now take place July 25-27 in Manila, Philippines. Organizers have offered refunds in the event Covid-19 causes additional delays.

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